NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. - The Merrimack College men's ice hockey team was unable to build on an early lead and came up short in its final game of the 2018 calendar year to Colorado College on Monday afternoon at Lawler Rink, falling by a 5-1 score. The Warriors open 2019 with a road game at New Hampshire on Friday night.
Score: Colorado College 5, Merrimack 1
Records: Merrimack (4-14-1, 2-8-0 HEA) | Colorado College (8-9-2, 2-5-1 NCHC)
Location: Lawler Rink | North Andover, Mass.
Game Duration: 2:15
How It Happened
- The two teams combined for three goals in the opening period, with Merrimack doing so first following a marker from junior Tyler Drevitch just past the three-minute mark. But that was followed by two Colorado College tallies to give the Tigers a 2-1 lead. Despite the Warriors holding a heavy advantage in shots in the frame (16-6), it looked for a moment as though the visitors would have a 3-1 advantage, but that would-be third goal was waved off after review for goaltender interference.
- Merrimack had two early power plays to start the second but could not capitalize, keeping the Tigers in front by a goal. Colorado would lengthen its lead to three after an even strength tally and then a late power play strike, as the Warriors found themselves down by a 4-1 margin entering the third.
- Despite having another lofty advantage in shots on goal in the final frame, Merrimack got no closer on the scoreboard in the third, as the Tigers added one more lamp-lighter midway through the period to account for their final margin of victory of 5-1.
Goal #1 (MC, 1-0): Drevitch netted his fourth of the season and second in as many games with 3:13 gone in the opening period. Freshman Jordan Seyfert stole the puck inside the right point, skated in toward the far circle and fed Drevitch for a tap-in at the back post.
Goal #2 (CC, 1-1): Troy Conzo tied the game less than two minutes later thanks to a bit of a lucky bounce, as his third of the year leveled the ledger. Following a faceoff win, Erik Middendorf pushed the puck up to the point where Zach Berzolla let it fly, but it was Conzo who got a piece of the puck and watched as it bounced through traffic and in from the lower left side.
Goal #3 (CC, 1-2): The Tigers took a 2-1 lead on Alex Berardinelli's seventh goal of the season at the 13:27 mark of the first. Zerzolla forced a turnover inside Colorado College's own blue line and tapped it up to Berardinelli to start the odd-man rush. Berardinelli would get behind the defense and eventually scored on a snap shot over the left shoulder.
Goal #4 (CC, 1-3): CC pushed its lead to 3-1 after Trevor Gooch notched his seventh of the year at 8:51 of the second. Conzo started the play by pushing the puck around the boards from the right wing wide to Chris Wilkie, who sent a blind pass between his legs backward to Gooch, whose one-timer from the near dot found the back of the net.
Goal #5 (CC, 1-4): Grant Cruikshank scored the first power play goal of the game for either side with 1:25 left in the middle period, making it 4-1 CC. The Tigers moved the puck around the zone tic-tac-toe from the slot to the right point and then to the top of the far circle for a one-timer from Cruikshank that went in five-hole.
Goal #6 (CC, 1-5): Westin Michaud added one more for the Tigers at the 11:38 mark of the third to account for their final margin of victory. The play started with Wilkie slinging the puck around from the left point before the puck wound up back to the right point on the stick of Berzolla. He would skate it into the right corner and then found Michaud in front, who scored on a second chance opportunity.
- Drevitch's goal was his career-high fourth and marked the second time in his career that he has scored in consecutive games. Rookie Jordan Seyfert picked up his sixth assist in the process.
- Junior Patrick Kramer finished with a team-high three blocked shots, while sophomore Dominic Dockery added two more to his team-leading total.
- Senior Derek Petti (11) and Kramer (10) both had double-digit faceoff win totals on the afternoon.
Notes & Numbers
- Merrimack finished with 30-plus shots for just the sixth time this season, setting a new season-high with 39 shots on net against the Tigers.
- Merrimack saw its all-time record with Colorado College move to 0-4-0; the Tigers, who were making their first-ever appearance at Lawler Rink, had won each of the previous three meetings, including last year at Broadmoor Arena in Colorado Springs. Merrimack and CC have played in four different states in their series history: Alaska, Florida, Colorado and now Massachusetts.
- The Warriors also saw their season-long winless streak move to eight games (0-7-1). Merrimack's last win was at Bemidji State on Nov. 10 (1-0). It is the team's longest since losing 10 straight from Dec. 29, 2015 through Jan. 31, 2016.
- Goaltenders: Craig Pantano (13 saves, 4-10-1), Drew Vogler (5 saves) // Alex Leclerc (38 saves, 8-8-2)
- Power Plays: 0-4 | 1-3
- Shots on Goal: 16-6 // 12-11 // 11-6 - 39-23
- Faceoffs: 31 // 32
- Blocks: 12 // 10
Gresock | Babcock | Irvine
von Ungern-Sternberg | Petti | Tavernier
L. Drevitch | Kramer | McBride
Coomes | T. Drevitch | Seyfert
Heidt | Cook
Dockery | Carle
Solow | McArdle
Pantano | Vogler | Halladay
Merrimack will return to Hockey East play and open the 2019 slate against two different opponents, traveling to New Hampshire and Northeastern next weekend (Jan. 4-5).